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US Credit Union Blockchain Consortium Joins R3’s Global Ecosystem

CULedger, a U.S. credit union service organization-owned blockchain consortium, has joined enterprise software firm R3’s global blockchain ecosystem.

CULedger, a credit union service organization (CUSO)-owned blockchain consortium, has joined enterprise software firm R3’s global blockchain ecosystem. The partnership was officially revealed in a press release published Dec. 13.

Based in Denver, Colorado, CULedger reportedly delivers blockchain applications to credit unions and their members, using the technology to mitigate cybersecurity and fraud risks, as well as streamline administrative and operational processes to save time and costs. The firm also provides a specific blockchain-based identification solution for credit union members.

As the press release notes, the consortium joins the R3 global network, which has to date reportedly gathered over 200 financial services companies, tech firms, central banks, regulators, and trade associations to collaborate on or use its enterprise-grade blockchain platform “Corda.”

Corda has been designed to work within the financial services industry and uses a permissioned distributed ledger technology (DLT) system to restrict data access to the required participants only. This July, R3 released a commercial version of Corda, dubbed “Corda Enterprise,” aimed specifically at businesses.

The Corda platform has seen a wave of positive adoption news in recent months.

Just in December, R3’s Corda-based Euro Debt Solution was used by a GermanFrenchDutch triad of banks to successfully complete a live commercial paper transaction; major Japanese financial services company SBI Holdings announced its partnership with R3 to boost use of Corda in Asia; and 26 French companies and five major banks completed a know your customer (KYC) test using Corda.

In mid-October, United Kingdom-based bank Natwest announced it would be integrating a new blockchain platform based on R3 Corda technology for use in the syndicated loans market.

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Four International Banks Complete Commercial Paper Transaction on R3’s Corda Platform

Four international banks have completed a live commercial paper transaction based on blockchain consortium R3’s Corda platform.

A group of international banks in partnership with enterprise blockchain software firm R3 have completed a live commercial paper transaction based on blockchain platform Corda, Finextra reported Dec. 6.

The transaction was implemented on the Corda-based Euro Debt Solution application developed by R3, with German banking and financial services company Commerzbank, French corporate and investment bank Natixis, and Dutch financial services firm Rabobank as the participant.

In the course of transaction, Natixis reportedly issued 100,000 euro ($113,722) notional, while Rabobank acted as the incestor and ING as both dealer and escrow agent. Commerzbank developed the pilot framework, software and distributed ledger (DLT) network for the trade, and instructions on regulatory implications.

The banks have also developed a legal framework for the project in cooperation with external counsel Allen and Overy. Marnix Bruning, head of money market and central bank sales at ING reportedly said that the initiative “marks the start of building an improved DLT platform that enables direct settlement and reduces operational risk and costs at the same time.”

Launched in 2016, Corda is a decentralized platform based on the Ethereum blockchain, that is geared for use by financial institutions. Corda purportedly enables businesses to build interoperable blockchain networks that transact directly and privately.

Financial institutions around the world have been actively implementing blockchain technology into their operations. Yesterday, Cointelegraph reported that Brazil’s largest private bank partnered with United Kingdom bank Standard Chartered to create a blockchain-based platform for small loans. The two parties successfully conducted a proof-of-concept for the platform based on R3’s Corda Connect.

Also this week, Saudi Arabian developmental institution the Islamic Development Bank Group (IsDB) partnered with a Tunisian startup iFinTech Solutions to develop interbank blockchain tools. The new offerings will purportely improve Islamic financial institutions’ liquidity management and increase overall efficiency.

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SBI Holdings, R3 Embark on ‘Joint Venture’ to Boost Corda Blockchain Use in Asia

R3’s Corda platform aims for an adoption boost via a partnership with Japanese financial services giant SBI Holdings.

Japanese financial services company SBI Holdings will partner with software firm R3 to expand local use of its Corda blockchain platform, Cointelegraph Japan reported Dec. 5.

Quoting local news outlet Nikkei, the report reveals that SBI, which is involved in multiple cryptocurrency and blockchain-related activities, will expand on its existing investment in R3 to create a “joint venture” aimed at promotion.

“Europe is the most advanced in blockchain product development,” R3 CEO David Rutter told Nikkei in an interview:

“The new joint venture will strengthen the Japanese language service, and promote adoption.”

The company added its R3 partnership would extend beyond Japan to cover the wider Asian space.

R3 focuses on using Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT), such as blockchain, to facilitate efficiency increases primarily for banking partners. Based in the United States, the startup has clients throughout the world, which currently number around 200.

Deals continue to come, Cointelegraph this week reporting on a group of French banks completing a Corda-based Know Your Customer (KYC) trial, while R3 also announced that the first cryptocurrency added to its payments DApp would be Ripple (XRP).

SBI is also deeply entrenched in XRP, its joint money transfer operation SBI Ripple Asia gaining Japanese regulatory approval in September.

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Global Payments Powered by Ripple’s XRP: Blockchain Software R3

Back in 2016 – Corda, an open source enterprise product, was announced by the blockchain supported software developer R3. Now, it received an additional application named Corda Settler which targets to deliver and offer most services which business would ask to engage blockchain technology. Also, the settler is meant to bring together and work as a translator for wide range of fiat assets and virtual coins.

Gendal Brown – CTO of R3 added:

“The deployment of the Corda Settler and its support for XRP as the first settlement mechanism is an important step in showing how the powerful ecosystems cultivated by two of the of the world’s most influential crypto and blockchain communities can work together.

While the Settler will be open to all forms of crypto and traditional assets, this demonstration with XRP is the next logical step in showing how widespread acceptance and use of digital assets to transfer value and make payments can be achieved.”

As quoted above, the system uses XRP as a base currency. When a needed transaction is initiated on the network, one party can request the settlement [which can be instant] while the second is notified for the request.

With the aim to reach global-scale of app utilization, the firm behind the settlement product is already in corporation with over 200 firms in various industries.

The Corda platform has showcased its potential to handle different kinds and features offered by its applications in many cases, and the Corda Settler will function on the same manner.

“The Corda Settler is an open source CorDapp that allows payment obligations arising on the Corda Network to be settled via any parallel rail supporting cryptocurrencies or other crypto assets, and any traditional rail capable of providing cryptographic proof of settlement. Uniquely, the Corda Settler will verify that the beneficiary’s account was credited with the expected payment, automatically updating the Corda ledger. In the next phase of development, the Settler will support domestic deferred net settlement and real-time gross settlement payments.” – Blog post.

The post Global Payments Powered by Ripple’s XRP: Blockchain Software R3 appeared first on Ethereum World News.

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Global Payments Powered by Ripple’s XRP: Blockchain Software R3

Back in 2016 – Corda, an open source enterprise product, was announced by the blockchain supported software developer R3. Now, it received an additional application named Corda Settler which targets to deliver and offer most services which business would ask to engage blockchain technology. Also, the settler is meant to bring together and work as a translator for wide range of fiat assets and virtual coins.

Gendal Brown – CTO of R3 added:

“The deployment of the Corda Settler and its support for XRP as the first settlement mechanism is an important step in showing how the powerful ecosystems cultivated by two of the of the world’s most influential crypto and blockchain communities can work together.

While the Settler will be open to all forms of crypto and traditional assets, this demonstration with XRP is the next logical step in showing how widespread acceptance and use of digital assets to transfer value and make payments can be achieved.”

As quoted above, the system uses XRP as a base currency. When a needed transaction is initiated on the network, one party can request the settlement [which can be instant] while the second is notified for the request.

With the aim to reach global-scale of app utilization, the firm behind the settlement product is already in corporation with over 200 firms in various industries.

The Corda platform has showcased its potential to handle different kinds and features offered by its applications in many cases, and the Corda Settler will function on the same manner.

“The Corda Settler is an open source CorDapp that allows payment obligations arising on the Corda Network to be settled via any parallel rail supporting cryptocurrencies or other crypto assets, and any traditional rail capable of providing cryptographic proof of settlement. Uniquely, the Corda Settler will verify that the beneficiary’s account was credited with the expected payment, automatically updating the Corda ledger. In the next phase of development, the Settler will support domestic deferred net settlement and real-time gross settlement payments.” – Blog post.

The post Global Payments Powered by Ripple’s XRP: Blockchain Software R3 appeared first on Ethereum World News.

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Bank of Thailand Announces “Milestone” Digital Currency Project Using R3 Corda Platform

The Bank of Thailand (BoT) has revealed plans to develop a wholesale Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) that will use R3’s Corda platform, in a press release published August 21.

A CBDC is a digital currency issued by a central bank whose legal tender status depends on government regulation or law. The “wholesale” variant of CBDC limits its use to financial institutions and markets, as opposed to a “retail CBDC” for the general public.

R3’s Corda, for its part, is a distributed ledger technology (DLT) platform that has been designed to work within the financial service sector and uses a permissioned system to restrict data access to the required participants only.

According to the announcement, the BoT is partnering with eight financial institutions on the CBDC project – including Bangkok Bank Public, Krung Thai, Siam Commercial Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and HSBC.

In what BoT describes as a “collaborative milestone,” the participating banks will jointly design and develop the proof-of-concept wholesale CBDC prototype, the first phase of which is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2019. The effort, dubbed Project Inthanon, reportedly aims to “enhance efficiency of the Thai financial market infrastructure” and contribute to the design of its future evolution.

The announcement further reveals that in addition to Project Inthanon, the BoT is “conducting a DLT (distributed ledger technology) proof of concept for scripless government savings bond sale to improve operational efficiency.”

CBDCs continue to draw interest and divide opinions within the banking sector across the world. At the Deconomy conference in South Korea this April, R3’s research director Anthony Lewis predicted that efforts to develop wholesale CBDCs would accelerate in 2018, due to an increasing number of institutions recognizing the potential benefits that could be reaped through their issuance.

Retail CBDCs, meanwhile, have drawn a more circumspect response. This March, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) stated that “a general purpose [retail] CBDC could give rise to higher instability of commercial bank deposit funding” and potentially fuel faster bank runs, an opinion that was echoed by the Bank of England in May.

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R3 Consortium Releases New ‘Version’ of Its Corda Platform for Businesses

Blockchain technology company R3 announced July 10 that it had released a “version” of its Corda blockchain platform aimed specifically at businesses.

R3 is a consortium of over 200 companies that research and develop blockchain applications for the industries of finance and commerce.

Corda Enterprise, ostensibly “optimised to meet the demands of modern day businesses,” includes a “Blockchain Application Firewall” to allow the platform to run within corporate data centers and still communicate with Corda’s nodes.

Applications available on the regular Corda are now also functional on Corda Enterprise, R3 confirmed.

The new Corda unveiling comes amid an atmosphere of decreasing confidence in business uptake of blockchain.

As Cointelegraph reported, it is banks – the main client base for Corda’s original platform – that are especially wary, with other blockchain businesses such as Ripple themselves confirming institutions may not embrace the technology.

This week, another blockchain project aimed at increasing business integration while combatting their “concerns” emerged in the form of Oasis Labs, which completed an initial funding round worth $45 million.

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R3 Launches Corda Enterprise With First-Ever 'Blockchain Firewall'

More than a year in the making, Corda Enterprise has arrived.

Announced Tuesday, blockchain startup R3 has released a paid version of its signature open-source Corda blockchain technology, one that offers added features aimed at regulated institutions including 24/7 support, disaster recovery and more.

The big reveal comes just over 13 months after R3 raised $107 million, at the time stating that it would allocate funds for an enhanced version of its product. Further, it will bring to end a period of development in which businesses have needed to build on top of R3’s open-source code, dedicating internal staff and resources.

Still, while a step for R3, it’s perhaps the features that will drive most of the conversation. As part of the commercial rollout of its Corda Enterprise platform, blockchain startup R3 is touting such advances as the “first-ever Blockchain Application Firewall.”

Not a traditional firewall, the term denotes how Corda is able to limit communication between blockchain nodes operating in different environments, and with different informational needs from their network. For example, many Corda users, the company says, own highly secured data centres, running their existing infrastructure behind firewalls

A possible barrier to interoperability, R3 CTO Richard Gendal Brown said his team saw the possibility to “achieve the best of both worlds” by allowing as much connectivity as needed between Corda nodes running in closed and open environments.

Brown told CoinDesk:

“There is this dilemma, because blockchain nodes need to be able to connect to the core systems of a firm, but also need to be able to connect to other nodes across the network [and in] very complex networking architectures.”

The firewall, therefore, “protects the Corda node from the outside whilst allowing through just the traffic that should come through,” Brown said.

As such, it’s expected to be a key driver of uptake at a time when R3, which was reported to be running out of money, also seems to be building a creative open source community.

“We are at the point where the first I often hear of a Corda usage is when the project issues a press release, or we see questions on our Slack channel,” said Brown.

A novel breakthrough

As such, R3 and Brown are touting the Blockchain Firewall as a feature that should make Corda more appealing to businesses when compared to traditional open-source blockchains (for which such features would need to be custom created).

Existing blockchains, Brown says, are either deployed in standalone solutions with one application and network without any future interoperability and asset mobility, or what they are managing is not actually core to the institution.

The way it works is part of an Enterprise Corda node is allowed to sit outside of the network in what Brown compared to a kind of “demilitarized zone” that is visible to the internet.

“That tiny locked-down piece is massively secured in the demilitarized zone and then it alone has a tiny umbilical cord that allows the data to flow back in and out of the firm,” said Brown. “That separation of the nodes into those two pieces is the Blockchain Corda Firewall and we think it will be transformational.”

Not just a value-add for customers, though, the implications for R3 are also clear.

As the consortium progressed along the road to commercial distribution, one of the overarching motivations was to ensure interoperability with Corda open source as the ecosystem expands, enabling the system to achieve the kind of network effect of more open blockchains.

A new kind of network

But if such a move to more strongly consider interoperability seems premature, Brown counters the time is now for such considerations.

Returning to the question of interoperability, Brown predicts the enterprise blockchain market will soon consolidate down to a small number of platforms, escalating the need that these remaining systems can interchange data.

In this way, Corda, Brown argues, can interoperate in multiple ways, both between its own open source and enterprise deployments, as well as with other platforms, citing ongoing work with Hyperledger as an example of this.

As the market matures, he goes so far as to suggest that clients will not tolerate vendors selling them forks of open-source platforms that can’t interoperate.

“If I deploy a set of Corda nodes over to the left and then deploy a set of Corda nodes over to the right, it would be a tragedy if they couldn’t interoperate with each other,” said Brown.

In this way, Brown suggested the news might also serve as a wake-up call for institutions, who have built with technologies that might not be able to make the leap when the time comes.

Brown concluded:

“That’s what I’ve seen with some of the other platforms – standalone deployments; one application, one network, and it risks leading to a world of stranded assets and silos that we are trying to get away from.”

Fire image via Shutterstock

The leader in blockchain news, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

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Banks and Regulators Complete KYC App Test on R3 Blockchain Platform

39 financial firms partnered with blockchain consortium R3 completed more than 300 transactions via R3’s know your customer (KYC) application, according to a post on R3’s blog June 28.

R3’s KYC project involved major financial and banking institutions worldwide such as Deutsche Bank, ING, the National Bank of Egypt, Raiffeisen Bank International, and others. It also involved regulators and central banks such as the Central Bank of Colombia, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, and the Financial Superintendence of Colombia.

The transactions were conducted across eight timezones in 19 countries, wherein banks could request access to customer KYC data, and clients could grant or revoke access. Project participants ran a total of 45 nodes on Microsoft Azure, sharing data via the Corda network using CorDapp.

David E. Rutter, CEO of R3, said the goal of the the Corda-based KYC application is to speed up the usually “slow and time-consuming” process of verifying customer identity for financial transactions, also noting an “increasing demand for blockchain-based KYC solutions.”

Yorke Rhodes, Principal Program Manager of Azure Blockchain Engineering, commented that the initiative means to combine “technology and industry expertise” to facilitate the process of developинг blockchain projects by the banking sector, “aimed at solving shared business problems.”

On June 8, R3 reportedly revealed that the consortium’s internal financial targets are “10X short” of their revenue. A managing director of R3 told Fortune that the company is not in danger of running out of revenue, and will provide an update on their finances by the end of the calendar year.